A US teenager hoping to engage in “violent jihad” after he tried to detonate a would-be car bomb outside a bar in downtown Chicago, has been arrested and charged.Friday night’s arrest of Adel Daoud, an American aged 18, marked the end of an undercover sting operation during which agents provided him with a fake bomb that he attempted to set off shortly before he was detained, the US Attorney’s Office in Chicago said in a statement.
Mr Daoud, who lives in the Chicago suburb of Hillside, appeared before a judge on Saturday and was charged with one count of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction and another count of attempting to destroy a building by means of an explosive.
He faces up to life in prison if convicted of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. The second charge calls for a sentence of from five to 20 years.
According to an affidavit in the case, two undercover FBI agents contacted Mr Daoud around May in response to material he posted online and began exchanging messages with him.
From late May to mid-June, Daoud sought guidance on whether to carry out a terrorist attack in the United States, the affidavit said, and “confirmed his belief in the propriety of killing Americans in a terrorist attack.” He then began looking for online resources on how to carry out an attack.
On July 17, Mr Daoud met with an undercover FBI agent introduced to him as a purported cousin of one of the other agents and an “operational terrorist.”
At a subsequent meeting in early August, the pair discussed “plans to carry out an attack in the Chicago area with a vehicle containing explosives,” the document added.
During that gathering, Daoud allegedly showed the undercover agent four handwritten pages from a notebook that listed about 29 potential targets, including military recruiting centres, bars, malls and other tourist attractions in and around Chicago.
Other meetings followed, interspersed by electronic communications.
Around 8:00pm on Friday night, he allegedly drove the Jeep containing the fake bomb – which had been left in a parking lot – in front of an unnamed bar in downtown Chicago.
From an alley about a street away, he attempted to detonate the device and was subsequently taken into custody by the FBI.
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